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Brain MRI

(18 Posts)
Le1890 Mon 14-Nov-16 18:31:36

Just wondering if anyone has
Any experience of these or knowing people who have them?

I have been gettting various symptoms for a while including headaches and visual symptoms. I had a brain MRI last week and was told all was normal. No tumours, inflammation, stokes or ms. The consultant said 'its one of the cleanest MRI scans I've ever seen'.

Here is the issue, I suffer with anxiety so I'm worried a tumour has been missed? Can anyone rationalise with me or have any thoughts? I didn't have it with contrast but the consultant explained that the MRI sees the abnormality and then a contrast scan would have been ordered to look at it in more detail and diagnose etc. i have had an MRI of my liver and I do have a benign cyst that is only 1.4cm and was seen on an ultrasound then an MRI with constrast to get a good look at it. I digress.

I'm torturing myself with this instead of just moving on and accepting the good news.


Draylon Mon 14-Nov-16 20:56:36

Your anxiety is doing the talking. If it wasn't visible on the scan, whatever is causing the headaches isn't at all likely to be structural. As in 'a problematic structure that can be seen on an MRI'.

As for giving contrast, some sets of symptoms are so specific that contrast would be given in an initial scan, like the likelihood of a pituitary tumour if your symptoms and blood results point towards a pituitary tumour (benign!). Otherwise, if it ain't there, it ain't there!

Your scan was a 'I-don't-know-agram'. Let's take a look. Yes, tiny, tiny structural abnormalities might be overlooked in this scan, but they're looking for something with bulk that's pressing on things, causing malfunction or pain.

The MRI didn't reveal any problems along those lines.

People do get cross that they go to their GP/first referral with an issue which gets them sent on 2 week wait for 'scans' - being cross that they've been unnecessarily worried; but the thing is, a headache can have a multitude of causes, from the catastrophic (rare) to the annoying and transitory (v. common). In the litigious modern NHS, they'll start with the brain tumour and work back!

Wishing you all the best but YOUR SCAN WAS CLEAR! And you need to move on to help investigate and treat the far more likely causes of your headaches- like health-anxiety!

Le1890 Tue 15-Nov-16 15:10:15

I am in a terrible state. I just can't stop worrying a tunour has been missed.

I can't understand why I would have these symptoms and recently I feel like I'm waking up seeing flashing lights and weird sensations and now thinking it's seiszures I'm having?

Could they have missed it?x

Draylon Tue 15-Nov-16 19:07:35

I very, very, very much doubt that a tumour has been missed. Especially one big enough to be symptomatic.

Maybe you are having some type of seizure? Sometimes they can be caused by things you can see on an MRI scan, sometimes not, but if they're being caused by something invisible to MRI, it's not cancer.

Le1890 Tue 15-Nov-16 19:36:43

Thanks. It just hard to believe.

Surely I can't be having a seizure every time I'm asleep?

Karoleann Tue 15-Nov-16 19:54:30

Have your eyes been checked? It may be a PVD, or a small tear in the retina that is causing the flashing lights.
I'd go and have your eyes checked by an Optometrist. We can also often see signs of brain tumours at the back of your eye.

Karoleann Tue 15-Nov-16 19:56:27

One other thought....there's a type of acute glaucoma (intermittent angle closure) that causes headaches and occasionally flashing lights, the optometrist can also check for that too.

Le1890 Tue 15-Nov-16 20:40:50

Hi Karoleann

Thanks. I did have an optician test this was how all this started as my visual field test said outwith normal limits. It kept coming it saying I had clicked excessively and was unreliable. The results were different both times I did it. This freaked me out and I took myself straight to hospital.

The MRI scan was done and I had told the consultant I was so scared about a brain tumour. I was admitted for 3 days and had the scan as an inpatient. The consultant was originally going to do a CT scan then said she had decided to do an MRI as that shows everything. Then when she came with the results she said it was absolutely normal and infact one of the cleanest MRI scans she had ever seen.

The flashing light thing only happened when I was waking up out of sleep. I'm just so confused whether it's anxiety causing it as I have a severe anxiety disorder but that doesn't explain the visual field test. sad

I'm having a follow up app with a neurologist as I still have the symptoms.x

Le1890 Tue 15-Nov-16 20:41:29

P.s the rest of the eye exam was absolutely normal no swelling back of eye etc etc.

PJ67 Tue 15-Nov-16 23:49:20

A tumour would not have been missed, mri's are very sensitive. Try not to worry, it's good news. I have health anxiety and had a time where I convinced myself I had ms and I had tingling and numbness in my arms and face for a few months but it was all caused by anxiety.

Le1890 Mon 21-Nov-16 01:29:20


I had a follow up appointment yesterday with a neurologist. He said he had gone through my MRI scan and it is definitely normal. He the did various tests with me including eye tests and looking at back of my eye, then reflex tests etc. He said he can't find anything neurologically wrong with me. He said he thinks I have migranes and hormone imbalance from having just had a baby. It's so worrying a still have the symptoms. Mainly the brain fog is stressing me out just now and feel like my memory just not as sharp. Don't really know where to go from here. Can this really all be anxiety x

Draylon Mon 21-Nov-16 19:07:03

He said he thinks I have migranes and hormone imbalance from having just had a baby.

Vital point as yet not divulged wink, no? Brain fog? Oh yes. Baby brain is a thing. Hormones amok- oh yes.

It so could be hormones loaded on top of your anxiety.

You have had scans. You have had a thorough neurological examination.

I'd say the symptoms should be irritating, annoying- but at this stage not 'worrying'. Doesn't sound like cancer or MS, does it??!

You need to step away from horror diagnoses, and look further into managing your anxiety, as obvs this isn't good for you or your DC (congrats, incidentally).

Le1890 Thu 24-Nov-16 04:30:39


I just don't see how the MRI could have been normal because I have a few major symptoms of a brain tumour. I just can't help but think something has been missed??

Le1890 Thu 24-Nov-16 04:34:39

Would a head MRI have seen if there were tumours in the sinuses? I am sure they said they would check for an acoustic nurenoma. I just can't stop worrying about why I have the pressure around my eye and vision issue along with the brain fog, difficulty concentration and memory issues. I'm worried my facial nerve is being pressed on as feel my eye is drooping a bit more on same side. Consultant said the MRI ruled out stroke, brain tumour, inflammation, blood vessel issues and ms.

I have an outpatient opthamology app but not until Feb time as it's a 12 week wait.

flumpybear Thu 24-Nov-16 04:42:24

Le - it's unlikely just one person looked at your MRI scans and I'd doubt more than one person missed something as obvious as a tumour in the brain - don't forget an MRI takes slices of images so it's a 3D image, and loads of slices so it's unlikely on all those images theyd miss something
Also radiographers are qualified doctors and they see brain tumours very regularly so they would definitely see something wasn't right if there was a problem I'm sure, as well as the MRI operator, who would probably have noticed during your scan and flagged something up to the radiographer
I suffer somewhat with health anxiety and my body does react t my anxieties, do you think it might be this? You should see your GP again as I'm sure they'd prefer you spent five minutes with them to help talk you through any issues you have rather that you worry

gingeroots Thu 24-Nov-16 11:22:41

I'm sorry you're so anxious ,must be especially tough with a baby .

My own twopennyworth is that when I had a baby and now when I'm tired I do see flashes of light .

With regard to the eye test being unreliable ...I think it's very common with this sort of test that people keep pressing the button too soon .It does mean that they can't rely on the test ,but it's nothing sinister IYSWIM .

I honestly think you need to trust the MRI scan ,it would have highlighted any tumours .

I hope you feel better soon .flowers

BusterGonad Wed 30-Nov-16 06:41:11

More than one person checks out the MRI results for them to be checked off. They don't just have one person look at the results, hence you don't hear back for weeks. Well I didn't get my results for weeks anyway (not brain, bowel).

LobsterQuadrille Wed 30-Nov-16 07:30:28

Hi OP, I can't really add to what others have said but totally sympathise. I had a seizure (I think they call it tonic clonic) earlier this year and since then have had both MRI and EEG scans with nothing showing up. Absolutely clean as yours was. I also get flashing lights but mainly when I am really tired. I was for a while quite nervous walking around on my own in case of a repeat, but was greatly reassured talking to my niece, a doctor, who told me that something "unexplained" and similar happens every day at least once in every hospital. The brain is so complex that in almost all cases there really is nothing wrong - I've not had any further ill effects.

However, I really sympathise with the anxiety. Mine is about my teeth - I have huge anxiety that they will spontaneously fall out or that I will have another seizure and knock them out. I'm trying to work on the anxiety aspect because if I am logical and rational, I know that all tests have been done, that MRI scans are very thorough and that they are definitely viewed by more than one person and (cynically) that hospitals do anything to prevent mis diagnosis for their own reasons as well as looking after patients.

Hope you feel a bit better soon.

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